75% candidates for Maharashtra polls have criminal cases: ADR
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Mumbai: Out of the 16 candidates who are in fray for the 27 December biennial elections to eight local authorities constituencies in Maharashtra Legislative Council, 12 have criminal cases registered against them, according to election watchdog Association for Democratic Reforms (ADR).
Nine nominees for the polls are ‘crorepatis’, as per the Maharashtra Election Watch report brought out by ADR. Two candidates, one each from Congress and NCP, have serious criminal charges against them, claims ADR.
NCP-backed sitting independent candidate Arunkaka Jagtap, contesting for Ahmednagar local authorities constituency, has charge under IPC section 326 (voluntarily causing grievous hurt by dangerous weapons or means). Former Congress minister Satej alias Bunty Patil, contesting from Kolhapur local authorities constituency, has a case related to bribery against him under IPC section 171E.
The partywise break-up of candidates with criminal cases includes Independents-2, NCP-3, Congress-3, Shiv Sena-2 and BJP-2.
In the case of ‘crorepatis’ in fray, five are independents, 3 from NCP, Sena-3, Congress-3 and 2 from BJP. The wealthiest candidate in fray is former NCP leader and now independent candidate Prasad Lad, whose net assets are worth Rs.101 crore, followed by Ashok alias Bhai Jagtap (Congress) - Rs.87 crore, Ravindra Sakpal (NCP) - Rs.86 crore, Amrishbhai Patel (Congress) - Rs.80 crore and Bunty Patil with Rs.29 crore.
The candidates having maximum liabilities are – Prasad Lad (Mumbai) Rs.72 crore, Ashok alias Bhai Jagtap (Mumbai) with Rs.23 crore and Amrishbhai Patel (Dhule-Nandurbar) with Rs.14 crore. Three nominees to have declared high income are Prasad Lad (Rs.4 crore), Satej Patil (1 crore) and Arunkaka Jagtap (Rs. 54 lakh).
Literacy wise, the ADR report says that out of the 16 candidates, one is literate, one is 5th standard pass, one is 8th standard pass, one 10th standard pass, one 12th standard pass, five are graduates, two graduate professionals, one post-graduate and three others have not provided information about their educational qualification. Also, 10 candidates are in the age group of 51 to 60 years, three are in 41 to 50 years age bracket, two in age group of 61 to 70 years and one in 71 to 80 years age group.
The eight local authorities constituencies in Legislative Council for which elections will be held include 2 in Mumbai, and one each in Akola-Washim-Buldhana, Dhule-Nandurbar, Kolhapur, Ahmednagar, Solapur and Nagpur.
Prominent candidates include – Ashok alias Bhai Jagtap (Congress), Ramdas Kadam (Shiv Sena), Amrishbhai Patel (Dhule-Nandurbar), Arunkaka Jagtap (Ahmednagar), Gopikisan Bajoriya (Akola-Washim-Buldhana), Dipakbaba Salunkhe (Solapur), Girish Vyas (Nagpur) and Satej Patil (Kolhapur).